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Rampage Roll Over Griffins 6-3
Team falls to 2-10 at home…
By Jason Kasiorek
www.griffinscentral.com
December, 4th, 2010

The Griffins just could not find a way to break the home ice jinx tonight against the San Antonio Rampage. They played a good first period and then the wheels fell off in the second, giving up 3 goals and dropping their 10th game at home. Joey MacDonald made his first start in Grand Rapids since October, stopping 25 of 31 shots and absorbing the loss. Derek Meech (4) opened the scoring and Ilari Filppula added two goals (8,9) to take over share of the team lead.

Filppula almost got things started early when he found a seam, carried the puck into the Rampage zone and ripped a dangerous looking shot that Montoya just got a glove on. The Griffins had another dangerous chance on a great passing play by Minard, Owens and Tardif that came close. Meech finally got the job done, taking a cross ice feed from Mursak and smoking a shot past Montoya, stick side. Pyett made a great defensive play to keep it 1-0, when he broke up a 2-on-1 with a hip check that sent the puck carrier sprawling and then sent the puck up ice. Minard laid a huge hit the left a Rampage defender dazed. The griffins had three straight powerplay's, but couldn't get another one in. Prucha finished off a shorthanded breakaway to get the rampage on the board late in the period. Shots on Goal: GR 13 - San 5.

It took the Rampage just 16 seconds into the second to take the lead, with a shot that clinked in off the pipe and got behind MacDonald. San Antonio put a siege on the Griffins net, with several great chances on MacDonald most right on the doorstep. Momentum has definitely shifted toward the Rampage. Filppula streaked in on a shorthanded breakaway of his own, made a move, and tucked the puck under Montoya for a pretty goal that brought the crowd to it's feet. The tie was short lived however as Ekman-Larsson put a point shot on net that appeared to be redirected in front by Brine, over Joey's shoulder and into the cage. Tardif had a great chance in the closing minute, rushing in on Montoya and snapping a shot that almost got through him. The next play down ice, the Rampage made it 4-2, on another goal from Ekman-Larsson, to end the period. Shots on Goal: GR 4 - San 18.

San Antonio ran it up to 5-2 just shy of the 5 minute mark with Ebbett scoring the goal. Filppula cut the defect back to two with a great second effort in front of the net to pick up his own rebound and chip it in over Montoya. A steady parade of Griffins to the penalty box killed any chance of a Griffins comeback. Kolosov backed up and watched his man cut to the side of the net and wrist a shot past MacDonald, stick-side. Minard had a great rush to the net on a late powerplay, but ran out of room to get the shot off. Shots on goal: GR 6 - San 8. For the Game: GR 23 - San 31.

Lines:
Andersson/Ehrhardt - Raedeke - Straub
Owens - Tardif - Minard
Mursak - Johnson - Filppula
Tatar - Pare - Andersson

Pairings:
Janik - Amadio
Smith - Meech
Kolosov - Pyett

Starter: MacDonald
Backup: McCollum

Scratches:
Emmerton - Injury

PP:
Mursak - Johnson/Minard - Filppula
Janik - Pyett

Tatar - Pare - Andersson
Meech - Smith

PK:
Johnson/Mursak - Filppula
Kolosov/Smith - Meech

Tardif - Andersson
Janik - Pyett



Observations:

I will let Brian talk about MacDonald's game tonight, as I thought he let a couple of bad ones by, but had little to no help in the second or third periods.

Jamie Johnson looked more engaged and dangerous than any game so far this season. Hopefully that is a sign he is about to snap out of his slump.

I am usually a Kolosov booster, but not tonight. he looked like he played with more intensity early on, but made some awful mistakes in his own end. I am not sure what is going on with the gangly blueliner, but he is not the player we saw the last two seasons.

Filppula had another big night, and it was nice to see his return from injury.



Official Game Sheet